Components

In order to conform to the Coursera format, the course material consisted of 10 lectures of 80-110 minutes presented in 8-12 minute bite size videos. The need for the smaller videos pushed Prof. Weinstein to reconceive earlier formulations and to find the necessary ‘joints. Students who had taken the course on campus in the previous four years were invited to participate in the videotaping of section discussions. These ten sections were expected to showcase the ‘in the round’ dimension of the course.  

Majority of the student work happened in the discussion forums. Given the number of participants and activity, Prof. Weinstein was able to sample the posts in the discussion forum. He responded occasionally but was able to let the discussion grow organically.

Methods

Pre-launch preparation:

Throughout Spring 2013 Prof. Weinstein worked with the Brown team consisting of Sheridan center and ITG staff as well as several graduate TAs, all of whom assisted in creating the writing exercises, devising an evaluation model, and generally monitoring the course.

Post launch:

  • The Brown team: Dealt with variety of questions and issues that popped up during the course of 3 months.

  • Faculty involvement in the discussion forums: Prof. Weinstein intervened in the online discussion forums on a regular basis, and offered weekly commentary on the themes and issues raised by the online audience.